Han Solo in Yosemite

I wish I had been hiking in Hetch Hetchy this past week! Harrison Ford dashed into Yosemite piloting his own plane and filmed a sequence for the Environmental Defense Fund’s documentary “Discover Hetch Hetchy.” He has joined the battle for the removal of the O’Shaughnessy dam, a cause that has gathered much attention lately. As the San Francisco Chronicle asked, “Can Indiana Jones rescue Hetch Hetchy Valley from its watery Temple of Doom?” For anyone wanting to learn more about this controversial and complicated issue, I would recommend two good books:
Dam!Water, Power, Politics, and Preservation in Hetch Hetchy and Yosemite National Park

The Battle Over Hetch Hetchy - America's Most Controversial Dam and the Birth of Modern Environmentalism

Yosemite Association Members' Meeting

This year we celebrated our thirtieth members’ meeting and our President, Steve Medley’s, twentieth anniversary. We always hope for warm, sunny weather and Mother Nature granted at least half of our wish. Although the sun shone, a frigid wind developed that chilled most of us to the bone. In protest, I refused to change out of my shorts, but I certainly suffered for my stubbornness. Our keynote speaker, John Simpson discussed his new book Dam!: Water, Power, Politics and Preservation in Hetch Hetchy and Yosemite National Park, and another presenter, Garrett Burke, told of how he developed the design for the new California State Quarter.

For those of us who stayed the night in Tuolumne, we were treated to an icicle display the next morning. Since the temperature had dropped to an unseasonably cold 17F overnight, the water from the sprinkler system had frozen on the courtyard outside Tuolumne Lodge.

Water, Water Everywhere!

Wapama%20%20Tueelulala%20Falls.jpgI attended our quarterly board meeting In Hetch Hetchy this weekend. After the meeting, I hiked the Rancheria Creek trail to Tueeulala and Wapama Falls, which were both roaring.

On the bridge under Wapama, all who passed emerged on the other side soaked, as if someone had dumped a bucket of water over their heads. The trail was decorated with wildflowers, blooming late because of the excess water. Usually the Hetch Hetchy area starts becoming dry and hot by June. Not so this year!